Professor Olivier brings with him a wealth of experience in the higher education sector and has held a number of senior roles in UK and South African universities.
He joins RGU from the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) where he been Deputy Principal since 2018. Within his role at UWS, Professor Olivier’s portfolio has involved strategic and operational planning, executive-level leadership of the UWS Deans of School, and oversight of the university’s academic and professional services portfolios.
Prior to joining UWS, Professor Olivier was Vice-Principal and Deputy Vice–Chancellor (Academic) at Abertay University, where he led all academic activities, including teaching and learning, research and knowledge exchange, and quality enhancement and assurance.
With more than thirty years’ experience of working in universities, Professor Olivier currently serves on a variety of Scottish and UK-wide higher education bodies and groups. He has delivered many international invited speeches, most notably on change leadership and is an active researcher, publishing widely in applied ethics and sport.
Commenting on his appointment, Professor Olivier, says: “I am both humbled and proud to have been appointed as Principal and Vice-Chancellor of RGU. I am looking forward to working to deliver the university’s strategy, in partnership with colleagues, students, as well as regional, national and international partners.
“I have been privileged to have learned from many others along the way, and hope to further develop a learning environment at RGU that has both the spirit of curiosity and collegiality at heart.”
Professor Olivier will take up the positon of Principal at RGU on 1 September 2020. He will succeed Professor John Harper, RGU’s current Principal who is due to retire after almost 47 years of service with the university.
Colin Hunter, Chair of RGU’s Board of Governors, said: “Professor Olivier brings with him significant leadership experience in the higher education sector, both in the UK and internationally.
“He recognises the university’s strengths in its provision of a high quality and professionally-relevant educational offering, with a leading reputation for the employability of its graduates and its close engagement with industry. Building on its successes in teaching and research, the university is in a strong position to grow and evolve under the leadership of Professor Olivier as its new Principal.”